You’ve been told you need an endoscopy, but what does that mean, and why do you need one?
Having any kind of medical procedure can make you feel stressed, so understanding what to expect, and how it can help will help empower you to improve your health.
Endoscopy is a procedure that uses a medical instrument called an endoscope to look inside your body. An endoscope is a very small camera mounted on a thin, flexible tube or catheter. Your doctor can move the endoscope inside organs or into passageways such as your digestive tract.
Using an endoscope as a guide, your doctor can conduct investigations, identify problems, and even conduct minimally invasive surgery. All of these procedures are types of endoscopy.
Some common types of endoscopy procedures
Endoscopy can be performed on different places in your body. The names of these procedures vary, but they are all endoscopy-type procedures (guided by the endoscope camera device). Some common types of endoscopic procedures include:
- Colonoscopy involves the large intestine (colon and rectum). Your doctor will look at the health of the large intestine, look for polyps and remove them, if appropriate. Your doctor may prescribe a colonoscopy for routine screenings of patients over the age of 50 and for patients with risk factors or certain symptoms.
- Laparoscopy involves imaging and surgical procedures in the abdomen or pelvis. Minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery offers faster recovery times than traditional surgery. Procedures that use laparoscopy include hysterectomy, gall bladder removal, and certain weigh loss procedures
- Upper GI or gastrointestinal endoscopy involves imaging and surgical procedures in the upper GI tract including the esophagus and the stomach and upper intestine. Your doctor may recommend this procedure to determine what may be causing symptoms such as unintentional weight loss, chronic heartburn or acid reflux, pain in the stomach, difficulty swallowing or bleeding. Endoscopies also are used to treat bleeding ulcers, remove foreign objects (like pills or food that is stuck), remove growths, open narrowed openings and check for damage after ingestion of harmful substances
- Arthroscopic endoscopy is a minimally invasive surgery used to repair various problems in the joints. Knee surgery is one common type of arthroscopic surgery. If you have symptoms such as pain or inflammation of the joints, your doctor may use this procedure to repair the problem. This procedure is quite common for orthopedic injuries such as rotator cuff tears, knee problems including certain anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears and carpal tunnel syndrome.
Founded in 1993, Intercoastal Medical Group is a professional association of more than 85 highly credentialed physicians encompassing many a variety of medical specialties. At our seven convenient locations throughout Sarasota and Bradenton, our patients benefit from a seamless and efficient transfer of expertise and information, creating a unique continuum of care.
If you have questions about endoscopy or to schedule an appointment, call the experienced, friendly staff at Intercoastal Medical Group for an appointment at one of our area locations. You can also request an appointment online now. Learn more about our practice or find a provider at Intercoastal Medical Group today.